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Grateful Dead Live at Saratoga Performing Arts Center on 1983-06-18

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Grateful Dead Live at Saratoga Performing Arts Center on 1983-06-18

Topics Live concert

Bertha-> Jack Straw, Bird Song, Mexicali Blues-> Big River, Althea, Hell In A Bucket-> Deal Scarlet Begonias-> Fire On The Mountain, Playin' In The Band-> Drums-> The Wheel-> Playin' In The Band Reprise-> Morning Dew, Throwing Stones-> Not Fade Away-> Touch Of Gray, E:Don't Ease Me In-> E: One More Saturday Night

Collection GratefulDead
Band/Artist Grateful Dead
Venue Saratoga Performing Arts Center
Location Saratoga Springs, NY

Source Sennheiser 421's> Sony D-5 taped by Jim Wise


Sennheiser 421's> Sony D-5 taped by Jim Wise; cass master> CDR; via Tony Gardner with thanks to Paul Bottiglio; Note-May circ with mislabelled tracks, they would read 6-13-83


Reviewer: Sponge487 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 26, 2011
Subject: Everything you wanted
The other reiewers do a great job talking about this truly wonderful show. This was easily the highlight of the tour...the boys clearly wanted something special; the sound system included second time-synched stacks for those sitting on the grass. While this setup is normal practice now, the boys went all out for this show. The band had finally dug its way out of a financial hole so they splurged a bit for SPAC.

We arrived early morning after driving all night and the town was already grooving with heads doing their morning routine. My noon I swear the whole town had dosed... it was insane. The craziness continued inside the show... some guy took off all his clothes and guy fell off the balcony. And the music was... perfect... as good as it gets.

Everybody justifiably rave about Scarlet Fire & Morning Dew. (BTW Jerry sang & played it much the same 9/17/82 without any mistakes). Althea from the first set is also simply outstanding.

Man I miss these days.
Reviewer: Brooklyn Peach - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 12, 2011
Subject: The very words Saratoga Springs are red
and it sure was hot that night! This was the best Dead show I was ever at, perfect in every way. The grounds were amazing, I ended up dancing in front of a colonial mansion. The first set is beautifully played, a musical adventure. The second set is where it really began to gel for me. Right off the bat smokin', red-hot, like the song says, dancing hot and wild, heat lightning in the air, the Wheel, Playin', then just when you couldn't take it no more, the Dew, with, I swear, a cooling mist that started AFTER the song started (and the band was under a pavillion, and had no real way of knowing what the weather was like at that moment. I swear it was like they were controlling the weather) the epic Dew that wrenched the heart out of you and threw it on the ground...picking it up again, and sending us off another Saturday play in the beautiful wooded grounds where heads laughed, and ran and played for hours on the trails in the woods and by the brookside; where every one loved each other in the magical woods that night, and you could hear snatches of laughter and happy people all around, agreeing that this was the best ever, and it was, and we knew it, and knew how blessed we were to be there that night with no one to chase us away and to be able to play in the dark with the magical fairy children who were us. We Love You, comes the call through the dark woods, with giggles. You had to be there.
Reviewer: the total package - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 9, 2011
Subject: Babe it Ain't No Lie
It was indeed an outstanding show. Aside from the magnificent opus Morning Dew, Birdsong is stellar, and Jack Straw and Wheel are a thrill. Garcia’s voice was still silvery, and his guitar work that night was golden.
Reviewer: mrzoon - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 29, 2009
Subject: Not Just One More Saturday Night
We left Burlington, VT that day in a VW bus, me, W, A, and the couple who owned the bus.. sorry, I forget yer names :( Just the ride there was quite memorable :)

I still remember the gate - W had her camera under her shirt, and we were nervous she'd have it taken away. The suspenders were killing us at that point :)). But then we stepped through the gate, and it was like being told you could breath again after holding it for for a year.

Shortly afterward, as we made our way between the trees towards the PAC, a dwarf with a bota ran up to us, crying "Drink! Drink!". So we did :)))

The PAC was completely alive. I have never seen that kind of energy in anything before or after. It was like a 47,000 headed thing had just danced into the room. At first I went up on the balcony, but after a while I went down front to check things out, and.. it was close :))))

I got completely lost on the way out, but somehow found my way back to the bus, where everybody else had just returned, minutes before. We slept there in the lot, and left the next morning along with a bunch of other sleepy stragglers.

Oh, the show? It was freakin' amazin' :)))))
Reviewer: John Bouffard - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 16, 2009
Subject: 1985>
Thinking of 85. I know the My dog joke was 85 after Rooster. I am not sure what year they played Truckin but I don't see it on this list?
Reviewer: TheProdigalSon - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 14, 2009
Subject: My dog has no nose
Phil and Bobby banter while tuning 'My dog has no nose. How does he smell? bloody awful." The encore was Truckin' I forgot the energy of this show. intense.
Reviewer: mikeyank99 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 10, 2009
Subject: cry babies
excellent show you fuckin people stop fuckin crying about the sound if u dont like it dont listen im 50 yrs old dead head seen them in the 70s 80s 90s never will i complain so shut the fuck up
Reviewer: oldfatbubba - - November 7, 2008
Subject: thanks to for recapturing lost time...
This was my first show which came in my 18th year. Camped in the parking lot under the stars. Weather was perfect. Parking lot was eventful with campfires and conversation; people standing around in groups and talking until 3 in the morning. Went with girlfriend who convinced me to drop. Oy vey!

Overall, 'twas a good show. Jerry was in fine musical form w/ his hair in ponytails. Quote Bob sometime in set one, "one of Jerry's speakers just barked it's little heart out so we're gonna' fix it...", which is cut from this recording. Don't remember much past that ergo the title of this review.

More memorable was the drive back to CT - the VW microbus literally lost a rear wheel on the highway leaving the back of the van dragging on the asphalt at 50 miles / hr. Sparks were flying but miracles ensued: no one was injured by the wheel that rolled across the median into oncoming traffic, no fire or explosion despite the proximity of the gas tank to sparks and, the single bolt that held the wheel to the axle of said minibus (by design!) was not lost. An elderly couple in a Winnebago in view of all this pulled over and helped us get back on our way.

I was sold on the Dead from then on...
Reviewer: fatoldguy - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 2, 2008
Subject: A good time was had by all.....
For the most part a very good show... Bertha was great. Jack Straw a bit loose but still hot... Good Deal to end the set.... Still one of my favorite Scarlets- -Jerry just keeps taking the lead to the next level. Always nice to hear the Dew, but there are many, many better. Obviously Cornell 77 comes to mind, but so does Hartford 3/27/87.... Always preferred the 83 Touch of Grey's to the later years.... Crowd was great..... Lightning during 2nd set was perfect considering the song selection [Wheel]. Got lost finding the car after the show. Fortunately we figured it out and found our way back to the campground!!!

In any event, this is one of many shows that sounds as good years after the fact as it did that night..... So it stays in my top 15 for combination of musical quality and enjoyment with friends along for the trip....
Reviewer: 73vw - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 13, 2007
Subject: cooler water
you know??!!?? spac 83-85 so fuckin memorable...such fun years...s/f/p/dew...dancin...fingers, et al...thanks guys...copious doses in 83.....
Reviewer: Trevor tnt Toll - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 31, 2007
Subject: dont forget
The last show the dead played had two encores. Solid show the dead rock it hard.
Reviewer: JackSkellington - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 2, 2007
Subject: Its all downhill (not really)
This was my first show. What a way to start. 150+ more and I still cannot forget the experience at this one. Unreal. One of the best Dews and Scarlet>Fire I've ever heard. Plus the first of 2 SPAC 2 song encores (84's Satisfaction>BabyBlue was the other). I still have the t-shirt I bought at this show (and it still fits!).

Download this one for the first set and encores, but download the PCM for the second set. Its a little cleaner and uncut.
Reviewer: CastleIsland - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 16, 2007
Subject: 10-Star Dew, 3-Star Show
I think that Gatheringwhatyouspill was thinking of '84 not '83, and while you may have been there for two days, I'm pretty sure the Dead were not. ;-)

It did rain in '83, but not badly, just some light rain and thunderstorms nicely timed during Fire and Wheel (when Mother Nature responded to "if the thunder don't get you then the lightning will" with some aptly-timed forks of light in the sky, I really thought: there's got to be more to this than meets the eye...).

So the show has its ups and downs, but the ups are well worth it. Sound is average, but far better than the swirly Nakamichi-bred copy I've had for some 24 years.

High points: Nice boppy first set, Good Bertha and Jack Straw. Scarlet/Fire has some reallynice moments, and Playin' is a nice ethereal jam.

OK, Dew. Phil can be heard crumbling the pyrimids of Giza with his double and triple-stop bombs that are falling all over the place. Being about halfway up the grass bowl outside, these notes are still vibrating inside me. Damn!!!

After the mellow bit, when the boys come back up to intensity for the finale, there is a collective "scrubbing groundswell" never before or since heard by these ears (except on tape, of course). Imagine tens of thousands of screaming nuts being simultaneously transported to another planet by five mortal beings. The ovation at the end of Dew is also just a beauty to behold.

My favorite GD moment, and one I'll carry with me forever. If I ever need to smile, I just think about that minute or so at the end of Dew and everything else becomes much easier.
Reviewer: 12 Joshua - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 7, 2006
Subject: The GD flat out delivered at SPAC
This was the only SPAC show I missed and I'm sorry I did after giving this show a full once over. I'm partial to the other Sennheiser 441 source of Set 2 from the balcony over this one (only because I'm partial to 441's). They just seem a bit crisper to my ear. Love the slowed down drop into Fire from the Scarlet Jam. Playin' is meanderingly trippy, super sweet lead into the Wheel from Space, but the Dew is one to be heard. Very nice version.

Being from the east coast I have special place for GD SPAC shows. I think they loved the venue too and it showed.
Reviewer: Capt. Cook - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 9, 2006
Subject: The Dew!
Well, I was at this show and I am not at all sure what the last reviewer was on, but it did RAIN and there was also sunshine, and I remember a voice declaring this night to be the largest crowd ever at Saratoga, and the sound rising from the bottom of the hill to fill the vast new york sky with great hits of thunder and love. The Wheel started the blissful ride toward Dew, and the place shook with ovations. Also, the single road outta there, and like 5 hours of sitting in the car, tripping, not moving, just tripping, replaying each note, sitting....
Reviewer: gatheringwhatyouspill - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 8, 2006
Subject: trying to remember this one
hey help me here, because unlike some of you scorekeepers, some of these tripped out excursions blend together. I remember a Saratoga that was 2 days, I see only one here, I definitely remember a decent DEW (always seeking the DEW), but most of all I remember some gawd awful pooring ass rain that turned the entire place into a mud bowl and the whole crowd into a soggy hotdog bun covered with mustard. Or at least that's what I thought happened. I blame the guy who said he brought tons of blotter because it seemed that the whole place was way more tripped out than usual. And funny someone mentioned radioactive whippets, too, because my other memory of that place was going into a local grocery store downtown and seeing someone rolling in the dairy aisle giggling with about 2 dozen spent cannisters of whip cream rolling around with him. so i haven't listened yet, but I'm about to, definitely cannot bestow a rating on an experience that so far all I remember is a crowd of soggy hot dog buns. police seem to come to mind, too, but I might be mixing that up with the carrier dome, which I'm going to hunt fir next to see if I can straighten out my upstte NY memories. If anyone remembers pouring rain and 2 days, help me out, because I was there grossing out wooried about you growing mold.

ok well now it won't let me post without rating, therefore I will give it a four. Since I can't remember it as clear as other East Coast shows, like Ithaca, Lewiston ME, spectrum 4/82 (greatest shakedown ever, and a blessed DEw) and the radioactive music hall was fun.

and oh yeah since I'm actually posting and I'll probably not get around to it again like forever, I wonder about the existance for public consumption of JGB performances. The particular ones that comes to mind from that era (I was in school in Boston at the time) are Ocean State PAC in Providence and the Orpheum. No I don't remember dates, but I remember it was John Kahn and Merle Saunders and Jerry and the girls. I remember cold weather too. And ok, speaking of John Kahn, how about Old and in the Way? These are the questions that I wonder about, any help would be preesciated.

Does anyone know a guy named Father Bones?
Reviewer: 2dose - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 30, 2005
Subject: "The Dew!!!"
This was the first time they played at the S.P.A.C. and one of my faves being I went to all of them. Like all the other reviews mentioned, the Althea was played to perfection and there was an awesome lightning show in the sky during the Fire On The Mountain. The whole place was dosed out of their friggin minds to the point of no return and then they hit us with the best Morning Dew ever IMO. What more can I say except that there's better recordings out there than this one but DL this and feel the vibe. It's well worth it just for the F#$%^&ing Morning Dew ! I give it a 5 for the energy but a 3 for the sound. Therfore a 4 star is fair for this recording.
Reviewer: early 80's meltdown - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 6, 2005
Subject: Nestled between the
Greek and Merriweather this has to be one of the best tripple plays out there. Love this brand new Spac run sick shit. Someone mentoned they were looking around for a good Althea on the Frost 83 review but I like this one better.
Marin 84 and spac 84 are also sweet herioned out funky Althea's. Jerry sounds boss on this one and Brent is bad ass along with the rest of the band. those were the days
as mentioned the Scarlet>Fire (wet slippery licks on Fire) and of coarse the Dew is moNSTer.
Reviewer: Dylanstubs - favoritefavoritefavorite - July 29, 2005
Subject: I guess it doesn't matter . . .
Althea is not bad. Scarlet>Fire is good. The Wheel>Playin' Reprise is smokin'. The Dew is the BEST EVER. The rest of the show frankly belongs in the garbage. Incredible highs and lows here, but that's what it was all about.
Reviewer: Green Wave Dave - favoritefavoritefavorite - June 21, 2005
I agree with other posts, this may be one of best Scarlett/Fire's ever. I rate it right there w/ Austin (Manor Downs) summer of 83.

We used same mic's w/ shotgun extensions, our tape had more punch, less audience. This is VERY listenable, though!
Reviewer: walthalljp - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 7, 2005
Subject: Filled with energy and tight playing by the band...
While these recordings may not be the best sound quality, the show definitely qualifies as one of the best every played, no doubt. I was at this show and got the tape soon afterwards, these uploads sound pretty much like the tape I got back in 86 - good audience. This show has always been one of my favorites. I have to agree with all of the comments about the Scarlet > Fire, this version could be the best ever. I recall that during Fire On The Mountain a brief storm rolled overhead and we were treated to a little rain and some very timely lightening. It was as if the boys were calling Fire from the sky that night. Then the Morning Dew with Phil's bass just blew everything away. I seem to recall the encore as starting with Touch of Grey, a three song encore but I could be wrong. This show is worth the download for the energy and quality of the playing, don't miss it.
Reviewer: Jonathan Reisbaum - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 30, 2005
Subject: 10 th row center
We dreamed and planned this experience from my siblinghood, meditating on the words "Play Dew at Spac" for months. We had the perfect lot experience and the Scarlet-Fire and Dew are really off the hook. What really is stunning however is the entire aud clapping as one soul during the Playing reprise and agin at a slow point during the Dew. A high point of human history.
Reviewer: barrett196 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 31, 2005
Subject: Dosed
I was so heavily dosed during the first set It seems like a dream still....
My first summer tour with memories that will last forever. I just remember feeling so alive and happy to experience an era in music and culture that will never happen again. I truly love this band and the music.
Reviewer: lpenoza - favoritefavoritefavorite - February 17, 2005
Subject: Not So Hot
I expected more after reading the hype. The band sounds off the mark - this is the type of performance that draws criticism for '83 GD. Flubs abound, energy just drops out in many places. There are moments of light in Scarlet and Dew. Not the best night - 2-stars for performance. The sound is nice for an aud, and gives a sense of being in the SPAC. 4-stars for sound.
If you want a great Dew from this era - get 11-2-85 Oade source.
Reviewer: Scoffmeister - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 16, 2005
Subject: Classic '83 show
This was always one of my favourite tapes. As others have noted, Scarlet>Fire & Dew are peak versions. The Playin' jam is also well worthy of note - excellent stuff. Probably the best show I've heard from '83, although the first night night at Red Rocks is a close second.
Reviewer: 20Hz - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 28, 2004
Subject: Scarlet>Fire
IMHO this is the Scarlet>Fire to judge all others by. By far the most rowdy, rockinÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂ and powerful version IÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂve heard. Please just listen to the jam in Scarlet and you will hear what IÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂm talking about. The transition to Fire is simply stunning. The band nearly stops still while Bill & Mickey tweak with the timing. Oh, and the Dew is a mind blower. One of my all time favs! JY
Reviewer: sheikyerbouti - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 18, 2004
Subject: The mooooooorrrrrrrrrrrnnnnng deeeeuw tooooday
we hitched from boston for this with 1000 hits of blotter and almost got pinched by a statey so when we got there friday night there were prob 100 people camped in the parking lot but when we woke up sat the parking lot was filling and people were everywhere doing these whippets from the radioactive gas coming out of the ground and saratoga had no idea how to deal with this onslaught of humanity that barreled into town for this - the hells angels were driving their bikes around inside the show people were dancing everywhere and they finally just opened the gates for everyone - great 1st set scarlet>fire>playin long and very trippy - powerful back end of the show in particular m'dew which was one of the best they ever played and got the crowd out of their tripped out stupor... musically merriweather was the better of the two but vibewise no way to top the millions of fireflies in the trees and beautiful early summer night - really really hot show.... suffice it to say we left with about a dozen doses the crowd got the rest and think the band may have gotten a wee bit too.... the dead were staying in town at this hotel we all went back to and we had an impromptu bongo chant to get jerry et al out (didnt work)this was how psyched we were and did not want the night to end...
Reviewer: Harold of the Rocks - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 4, 2004
Subject: What a great Morning Dew
I d/l this show solely on set list. What a pleasant surprise this show is. The Scarlet > Fire, and Playin are good, but they can't touch 10/6/84.

Where this show really shines is The Wheel > Playin Reprise > Morning Dew. First time I heard these versions, the goosebumps on my arms and legs got so big, they pushed all the hairs out. The Wheel > Playin Reprise > Morning Dew is so good, my arms and legs are bald because of it!

Seriously, download this show... even if it's just for the The Wheel > Playin Reprise > Morning Dew. You won't be disappointed.
Reviewer: seneca - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 29, 2004
Subject: Awesome!
Oh wow! Wasn't too sure about this show, but I'm trying to collect as many shows as possible by the Grateful Dead (for personal use, not to sell) - needless to say it's been taking me forever. But awesome show, really - they do an awesome Althea, one of my favorite songs by them and this is hands down the best I've ever heard of it. Jack Straw, well - I've definitely heard better versions, the vocals are somewhat drowned out by the audience in the beginning, then it takes a faster pace which I did not like. Jack Straw is supposed to be a more slow paced song. Anyways, still an all around excellent show so that's why I gave it 5 stars.

Oh, and an excellent version of Fire on the Mountain!

EDIT: Someone said something about this version of Morning Dew being the best they've ever heard - agreed, another reason this show gets five stars.
Reviewer: skb archives - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 29, 2004
Subject: Great Show
I had a lot of fun at this show. There was lightning all over the sky during Fire On The Mt.
Also, this is by far the best Dew I have EVER
Reviewer: mystickaya - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 29, 2004
Subject: SMOKIN'!!!!!!!!!!
This show RIPS!!!!!! I 'd LOVE to get a SBD of this raging gem!!
The Scarlet >Fire is OFF THE HOOK. The transition is so cool. They bring it down to a slow, slow groove, then break into Fire & build it back up. The crowd is on FIRE ! Great entergy throughout the show! Jerry really had some serious energy on this night!!
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Uploaded by
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on 6/22/2004
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